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The News Hour With Jim Lehrer

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Somalia 22, U.s. 19, Sotomayor 11, Mogadishu 7, Bruce Belzowski 6, Sonia Sotomayor 5, Warner 5, Clinton 5, United States 5, Ed Tonkin 5, Us 4, Afghanistan 4, Kenya 4, Ramona Romero 3, Mr. Vargas 3, Newshour 3, Chevron 3, Australia 3, Ms. Romero 3, Nairobi 3,
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  PBS    The News Hour With Jim Lehrer    News/Business.   
   (2009) New. (CC) (Stereo)  

    August 6, 2009
    6:00 - 7:00pm EDT  

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captioning sponsored by macneil/lehrer productions >> woodruff: good evening, i'm judy woodruff. on the newshour this thursday the lead story is the senate confirmation of sonia sotomayor as the first hispanic justice on the supreme court. then the other news of the day: a look at the terror threat in somalia; who's getting cash for
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clunkers and what are they buying; and a science story about using forensic testing to determine the age of ivory tusks. major funding for the newshour with jim lehrer is provided by: >> what the world needs now is energy. the energy to get the economy humming again. the energy to tackle challenges like climate change. what is that energy came from an energy company? everyday, chevron invests $62 million in people, in ideas-- seeking, teaching, building. fueling growth around the world to move us all ahead. this is the power of human energy. chevron. intel. supporting math and science education for tomorrow's innovators. the atlantic philanthropies.
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and with the ongoing support of these institutions and foundations. and... this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> woodruff: the u.s. senate confirmed sonia sotomayor to the nation's highest court today. the federal appeals judge will now become the first hispanic justice and the third woman to sit on the united states supreme court. jeffrey brown has our lead story report. >> on this vote the yays are 68, the nays are 31. >> reporter: the confirmation vote this afternoon made judge sotomayor the 111th justice in supreme court history. and the man who nominated her, president obama, marked the occasion a short time later. >> with this historic vote, the senate has affirmed that judge
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sotomayor has the intellect, the temperament, the history, the integrity, and the independence of mind to ably serve on our nation's highest court. this is a roll the senate has played for more than two centuries, helping to ensure that equal justice under the law is not merely a phrase inscribed above our courthouse door but a description of what happens every single day inside the courtroom. >> reporter: 57 of 58 senate democrats approved the judge, as did two independents who generally vote with democrats; only edward kennedy missed the vote. he remained in massachusetts, suffering from brain cancer. another ailing democratic veteran, robert byrd of west virginia, did appear today to vote in favor. nine republicans crossed party lines to vote "yes" as well. among them was george voinovich of ohio. he rejected criticism that sotomayor's record shows an aggressive liberal agenda.
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>> judge sotomayor's opinion for the most part were lengthy, workman-lick limited rulings, the sort of opinions that exhibit the judicial restraint one would hope for a supreme court justice. >> reporter: but the majority of republicans voted no, and saw in those same rulings and sotomayor's speeches and writings reason to oppose her confirmation. charles grassley of iowa >> unfortunately, judge sotomayor's speeches and writings over the years reveal a judicial philosophy that highlights the importance of personal preferences and beliefs in her judicial method. >> reporter: democrat tom carper of delaware said that kind of scrutiny presents a standard no nominee or senator could meet. it's easy to take one line from one of our speeches to take us out of context and make us
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appear to be someone we are not. >> suarez: the broader politics of the vote were on display afterward. democrat robert&] mendez was asd whether republicans would suffer because so many opposed the first hispanic justice. >> for the hispanic community, which is not monolithic, it was monolithic about judge sonia sotomayor. if you meet all of the challenges that you are told you need to meet and still you can be told no, despite fidelity to the constitution, the law and precedent, then it sends a tough message to us as a community. and i think that message is one that will be seriously viewed in the days ahead by the community. >> reporter: republicans held no post-vote briefings on the confirmation. judge sotomayor will take the place of retiring justice david souter who though nominated by president george h.w. bush, became a reliable liberal vote. her seating is not expected to change the court's ideological divide. she will be sworn in saturday, allowing her to take part in a special re-argument of a campaign finance case the court will hear next month.
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now for some perspective on what today's confirmation means to the hispanic community and beyond, we turn to: ramona romero, president of the hispanic national bar association; danny vargas, chairman of the republican national hispanic assembly; and andrew kohut, president of the pew research center for the people and the press. ramona romero: what does the confirmation mean to you? >> to me it's a dream come true. it's a reaffirmation that we latinos can be recognized as contributing members of our society and there are no limits to what we can achieve. >> reporter: danny vary gas, what does it mean to you? >> it's a great american story. a woman who worked hard, two educated, did the right things and was able to succeed in her professional and personal life. at the same time, i would say it was good and right that she went
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through a rigorous, strict scrutiny through the hearings process and was able to answer tough questions from both democrats and republicans. >> reporter: you told us before she would not have been your nominee. >> she would not have been my nominee. i would have preferred a nominee from an ideological perspective that would have been more to the center. she's clearly left of center. but i think in her rulings over her 17 years on the federal bunch, she's demonstrated she can be mainstream for the most part but i can see where sincere centrists would have some real issues with some of her realings and statements in the past. >> reporter: and you talked with a number of them in the days beforehand about those things so they were wres wrestling with that. >> many, for example, orrin hatch who's been a champion within the hispanic community for many years, he wants to see a hispanic on the court. miguel estrada would have been a great nominee to go through the appeals court process and become a superior court nominee. he was treated very badly by the
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democrats to his process to become confirmed. so i think it's going to be very important for us to say that while she was a great nominee, there were issues that people had. >> reporter: ms. romero, there was a lot during this whole process, there was a lot of talk to stay with the senate debate process, a lot of talk about the role of ethnicity in a person's... and gender in a person's ability to be a judge and how that would play as a judge. what did we... what did you take from that debate? was it helpful? was it healthy? did anything useful come from that? >> i find ironic that the folks who focused on that issue do not think about the fact that 106 of 110 supreme court justices have been white males and inherent in a lot of the questions is the premise that only white males can be impartial. it is clear from judge sonia sotomayor's 17-year record on the bench that she adheres to
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the rule of law. she is a mainstream jurist and that is the key and that should be the focus of the debate. i also disagree mr. vargas' assessment that they're issues for sincere senators to be concerned about. the test cannot be whether you agree or disagree with a judge's likely rulings. after all, we have a fair and independent judiciary so that we have a safe place as a people when we disagree with our government so that we can rely... the political pressures are not going to inform the ultimate outcome of legal decisions. so i think it's a horrible standard to impose on a judge that you can only get my vote if i'm a u.s. senator if i'm likely to agree with your opinions.
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>> reporter: mr. vargas, what to you make of the debate that took place over the last weeks. >> again, we're not going to replay the hearings here. but what we had to see was... my recommendation to republican senators was to make sure we had a fair and respectful process, two through strict scrutiny, ask tough questions because i think even judge sotomayor would have preferred to have that strict scrutiny so she can go through the tough questions. i think the real concern, though, is not a particular... how she might vote on a particular case but her view of the role of the court. we do have three branches of government that go through this balancing act through this tug-of-war everyday so i think some of the concerns of sincere senators was what her view of the court was going to be moving forward. >> reporter: i think... >> reporter: i want to bring in andy kohut because you've been track the interest in the confirmation. we don't want to reflay whole debate here, but in terms of interest... >> strong interest. strong interest. 54% of the public said they'd been following the story closely.
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when we were tealing with alito a year or so ago or two years ago it was only 37%. so this is a story that engaged americans of all ethnic groups and men and women and so on and so forth. 51% of latinos. not particularly greater than the public at large, but for both latinos and the general public much greater than usual for supreme court nominees. >> reporter: were you able to look at some of the particular aspects that we're talking about here, we're debating about: the gender issues, the ethnicity issues, the things that stirred people up? >> not so much that but more the bottom line reactions to what should happen here. for the last six to eight weeks, we found solid majorities were majorities of the public saying that she should be confirmed. the last poll by a margin of 50% to 28%. as you might expect, among hispanic citizens, the margins of support were much higher, 61% to 13%.
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and what we had seen with both justice... the confirmation of justice roberts and justice alito, a much closer division of opinion on both of them, especially alito. so she got a good reception from the american public, but especially from hispanic citizens, as you might imagine. >> reporter: so, ms. romero, what does that interest and now the confirmation translate into, particularly in terms of politics, the political impact? we heard senator martinez in our piece. what do you think will be the impact? >> well, i think we are a generous people. we forgive but we don't forget and i think the republican party missed a great opportunity to reconnect and reengage with the latino community. i was sitting in the gallery today an i was taking notice of who voted yes and who voted no. and more importantly, there were watch parties throughout the
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country today where people of all races, ethnicities and both genders were watching what was happening. so i think this was a missed opportunity for the republicans. i think it sent a horrible message to the hispanic community because we offered one of our very best and they found her wanting. >> reporter: mr. vargas? will there be political repercussions? >> there may be. i'll be honest with you, i think what republicans need to do is point out the fact that democrats treated conservative nominees like miguel estrada, like janice rogers brown very, very unfairly and very negatively. judge sotomayor was treated with respect, she was given a fair process. at the end of the day, though, it's going to be up to hispanics to realize where this fits in the equation. i think they'll... they will have seen this vote as something that they didn't like, they didn't agre with but in the big scheme of things there are
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things like the economy, thins like health care, foreign policy that they will also take into account as they move forward in voting in the future. >> reporter: how diverse is that community? we heard senator mendez talk about... menendez talk about it was a diverse... in this case he thought it was a single block. do you agree? >> i agree. by and large the vast majority of hispanics supported judge sotomayor's nomination to the court. i would expect moving forward we're going to keep watching how she rules in the future. i would love to be able to see her move forward and become a great supreme court justice. i think her personal story and life accomplishments would be a great example to not just young hispanics growing up but all americans. this is a great american story. but we're going to keep an eye on how she rules in the future on those important issues will affect all americans. >> reporter: andy, you looked at this aspect of this as well. on the other hand, i expect republican senators voting against her faced... well, they had to deal with their own... their party as well, right? >> they had to deal with that base that increasingly thinks they're not conservative enough
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and they're not standing up for the principles of the republican party. on the other hand, the republicans are in a deep hole with hispanic voters. in the first term they were doing quite nicely... the republicans were doing quite nicely thanks to president bush's popularity with hispanic voters. they won 44% of the vote, though. that fell to 30% in '06 and 30% in '08 and we have a situation where the republican party is 88% white anglo, the same percentage that was white anglo in 2000. the democrats, on the other hand, have changed from 64% white anglo to 56 in eight years. hispanic voters are not attracted to the republican party by a margin of 55% to 8% the pew hispanic center found it's the democrats who care more about the interest of hispanics in the this country.
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a problem. >> reporter: ms. romero, i want to end coming back to where we started with the larger impact. as i said? our opening piece, the thinking is that in terms of the supreme court, this is unlikely to have a huge impact. substituting judge sotomayor for justice souter. what about for the legal system more broadly, snow do you see some kind of broader impact? >> i think it's important because our justice system relies on public trust and confidence in its partiality. it is important that that system reflects all segments of society. hispanics are obviously the fastest growing and largest minor any the country so the pictures matters. it's important for hispanic children and it's important for all people in this country for the picture of the supreme court to reflect the broad scope, the rich mosaic that we are as a
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people. >> reporter: mr. vary gas, the last word. >> i agree. i think the optics of it, of having a hispanic on the supreme court after all these years is a wonderful thing. it's a monumental historic occasion. but i agree with senator hatch in that i think it would have been preferable to have a nominee that may not have been that controversial, i think republicans in the senate also sent a message to president obama saying this is the line, don't go any further to the left than this in any future supreme court nominations that you might have. >> reporter: danny vargas, andy kohut and ramona romero, thank you very much. >> thank you. >> woodruff: you can find out how your senators voted on the sotomayor confirmation at our web site, newshour.pbs.org. also there, an interview with amy walter of hotline about the politics of the vote. >> woodruff: in other news today, four u.s. marines died in a roadside bombing in western afghanistan.
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that made at least 15 western troops killed so far in august. during july, there were 44 americans killed in afghanistan, plus 31 soldiers from other countries. on the u.s. economy, the labor department reported first time claims for unemployment benefits fell more than expected last week. but it wasn't enough to lift wall street today. the dow jones industrial average lost more than 24 points to close at 9256. the nasdaq fell nearly 20 points to close at 1973. federal immigration officials have announced a major overhaul of how the us handles detention and deportation. under the new plan, immigration detention would shift away from a criminal system, to a civil system. it would also provide more direct monitoring of conditions at facilities that range from local jails to federal centers. as a first step, families will no longer be sent to a former
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texas state prison. it was criticized for placing children behind razor wire. movie director john hughes died today in a heart attack in new york. he worked on a series of popular films in the '80s and '90s. his credits include directing "ferris bueller's day off" in 1986 as well as writing the screenplay for "home alone" in 1990 plus two sequels. he also wrote the screenplay for national lampoon's "vacation" in 1983. john hughes was 59 years old. >> woodruff: and still to come on the newshour tonight: trading in gas guzzlers; and testing for old ivory. that follows our look at the islamic insurgency in africa. secretary of state hillary clinton drew attention to that in kenya today on the third day of her 11 day tour of the continent.
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margaret warner reports. >> warner: the secretary of state began her day with a solemn visit to nairobi's memorial park. she placed a wreath at the site of one of the deadliest pre-9/11 al qaeda terror strikes against the united states, the 1998 embassy bombings in kenya and tanzania. the attacks, which happened 11 years ago tomorrow, killed more than 220 people, mostly africans and wounded thousands more. today secretary clinton spoke of the ongoing struggle of the u.s. and its allies against the threat of terror around the globe. >> i appreciate greatly the commitment of the kenyan government to partner with us and other nations and people around the world against the continuing threat of terrorism which respects no boundaries, no race, ethnicity, religion, but
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>> warner: then secretary clinton turned her focus to somalia the place the u.s. believes now poses the greatest terror threat in all of sub- saharan africa. she met with the country's interim president sheik sharif sheik ahmed at the u.s. embassy in nairobi, and pledged additional u.s. support including military aid for his government's battle against islamic militants. >> we believe that his government is the best hope we've add in quite some time for a return to stability and the possibility of progress in somalia. >> warner: somalia has been wracked by violence among warring factions for more than two decades. but in recent years, the trouble's been fueled by an indigenous group of islamist militants, known as al shabaab. it's believed to be loosely linked to al qaeda. its fighters have been battling block-to-block in the capital of mogadishu to oust the president, who took office in january. clinton said today the threat posed by al shabab extends beyond somalia's borders.
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>> al-shabab wants to take control of somalia and use it as a base from which to influence and even infiltrate surrounding countries and launch attacks against countries far and near. if al-shabab were to obtain a haven in somalia which could then attract al-qaida and other terrorist actors it would be a threat to the united states. >> warner: n fact, the group was linked to a foiled terror plot in australia earlier this week. the general lawlessness has also spawned another thre0bgainst u.s. interests, piracy in the waters off the east african coast. the secretary flew to south africa tonight, the second stop on her 7-country african tour.
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>> warner: for more on the instability in somalia and the implications for the u.s., we turn to tristan mcconnell, a correspondent for the international news site global post. tristan, welcome. secretary clinton had some very stark warnings today about the danger posed by this group al shabab in somalia. there are a lot of militant islamic groups in the world. what is it about somalia that makes it such concern? >> i think that's so concerning about al shabab in somalia is that somalia is the world's pre-eminent failed state. there's been no functioning government there for 18 years now. it is the perfect example of the ungoverned space, the kind of place where al qaeda and other groups like to develop themselves. al shabab itself is an islamist extremist organization that's fighting the united nations and
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western-backed government of president sheik sharif ahmed in mogadishu. but they themselves have on occasion professed a allegiance to al qaeda and al qaeda lieutenants have claimed al shabab for themselves. so washington is concerned about the link there is and particularly concerned that this might become kind of a haven for worldwide jihadists. >> warner: so in other words they were really most concerned about the prospect of an afghanistan scenario, a pre-9/11 afghanistan scenario? >> i think that's exactly what they're concerned about. if you look at the national defense strategy from 2008, one of the key things that they were talking about there was ungoverned spaces. and somalia is the... really the perfect example of this. there is no functioning government there. there is a transitional federal government in mogadishu but it controls very small pockets.
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the force, if you like, that has control in somalia, is these al shabab extremists. and, you know, they have professored an ideology of jihad islamism, and, you know, we've seen these w these arrests in australia this week of people allegedly trained in somalia planning a terrorist track in australia that they're spreading this jihadist ideology from somalia outwards. >> so are you saying that the government is so little control over the space inside somalia that, in fact, al shabab and other groups can already set up terrorist training camps in the country? >> certainly intelligence sources i've spoken to are concerned about this. we've seen in some of the al shabab propaganda material that's online and elsewhere that they've been using foreign fighters from the pakistan, from
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the swat valley, guys coming in from america, from britain, from elsewhere to train and, indeed, to bring training capabilities with them. so the fear is that somalia, as i said, an ungoverned space, is becoming a location for these jihadi trainers. >> warner: now what does the u.s. support really consist of? >> well, what we heard from hillary clinton today was a reaffirmation of u.s. commitment to support the transitional federal government of president sharif. now, what that means, it means... it basically means arms and it means aid. now, in june the state department admitted that it had sent in around 40 tons of arms and ammunition to the transitional federal government and hillary clinton said they will continue to provide arms and ammunition. they will also help with training. but also there will be a humanitarian aid aspect.
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around 40% of somalis ten million people are now in need of humanitarian aid. there's a drought which is affecting food production. plus, of course, the ongoing civil war which is causing terrible strife for people. thousands have died, hundreds of thousands have been forced from their homes. this is a real humanitarian crisis. i mean, here in kenya where i am there are around 300,000 somali refugees living in squalid conditions in refugee camps in the north of the country. so this is a big humanitarian problem. it's also a big security problem and what hillary clinton was saying was that the u.s. will do its best to support the transitional federal government in both these areas. >> warner: i know you're not in somalia, you're in nairobi, but from what you understand who has the momentum in at least the military conflict part of this struggle going on in mogadishu
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and elsewhere in somalia? >> well, since early may al shabab has looked like it's had the upper hand. although in the last few weeks, the african union peacekeepers have been rather more forceful in their defense of the transitional federal government. this is 4,300 odd strong contingent of ugandan and burundiian peacekeepers who are there to supposedly keep the peace but to defend the transitional federal government. now, what we've seen in the last few weeks is it's like pushing back on al shabab and now we have a real state mail situation in mogadishu. but if we look at the kind of control that president sharif's government actually has, it's very limited, indeed. at the moment, they do have control of a town called bela twain near the ethiopian border, but that wasn't the case a couple weeks ago. in in mogadishu they have a presidential palace, they have control of the airport, control of the seaport.
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and a handful of roads in between. but everything else in mogadishu is really a fluctuating situation from day to day and the transitional federal government really has very little control over its own territory. >> warner: tristan mcconnell of global post, thank you so much. >> no problem at all. >> woodruff: again to our web site newshour.pbs.org. you can watch a slide show of photographs from somalia and read more about the country's economic and political struggles. this is pledge week on public television. we're taking a short break now so your public television station can ask for your support. that support helps keep programs like ours on the air.
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his theory, published in "science" magazine, will become widely accepted but it will take a few years to erode archaeologist's deeply entrenched clovis-first bias. >> woodruff: next, the popularity of cash for clunkers and the push to extend the program. newshour correspondent kwame holman begins with some background. >> holman: following the house's lead, the senate moved to pass a $2 billion extension of the program this evening.
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and for some dealers, that extra cash is critical. we're just in limbo of what happens next. >> holman: this atlanta chevy dealer says the program has been good for sales, but. >> as of last night there's a moratorium, we're not doing any more cash for clunkers deals until we get word that the senate has approved the additional $2 billion. >> holman: right now, he says he's waiting for $800,000 worth of remibursements from the government for his network of dealerships. the program, officially known as the car allowance rebate system or "cars" offers cash back for trading in vehicles that get less than 18 miles to the gallon. if the new car gets at least four miles per gallon better mileage than the old, a buyer nets $3,500. and a 10-m.p.g. increase earns $4,500. the improved mileage requirements are less strict for new light trucks.
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the $1 billion set aside for the program was supposed to last until november. but it has been so popular, that the money was used up in a matter of weeks. the federal department of transportation says that as of yesterday, the program took 157,000 vehicles off u.s. roads, many disabled and headed to the scrap heap. dealers say that number is likely much higher. many have had trouble filing paperwork with the government's computer system. >> i brought it home and at 2:00 o'clock in the morning when everyone on the west coast was sleeping, i put my stuff in. >> holman: the program has been a boon for the big three american auto manufacturers. of the new cars purchased through the program, 45% are made by general motors, ford, and chrysler. the remainder are from foreign manufacturers, several of which produce those cars in the u.s.
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six of the most popular replacement models are from japanese companies, including the top seller: the toyota corolla. >> woodruff: for a closer look at the program to date and some of the questions surrounding it, we turn to: ed tonkin, the vice chairman of the national automobile dealers association, a trade group. his company has 14 dealerships in oregon that sell domestic and foreign models. he joins us from portland this evening. and bruce belzowski of the university of michigan's transportation research institute. gentlemen, thank you both for being with us. i'm going to start to you, ed tonkin. how well do you think this cash for clunkers program has done? >> i think it's been terrific, judy. even better than anyone expected. it's interesting because as you see in the media, in some of the publications, people are wondering is the stimulus program working, the government stimulus program. here you have probably the most successful. you have action and then reaction. the program came into effect on july 1, the regulations were
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promulgated, produced on july 24 and that's when it really took hold, it there's been an explosion in business. it's been terrifically successful for not only auto dealers but automakers, but the country as a whole because this will keep the plants going. >> reporter: bruce belzowski, what about in terms of getting gas guzzlers off the road and getting more fuel efficient cars on the road? how do you size up the success? >> well, when you look at the true numbers, there will probably be about 225,000 vehicles for the first round that will get taken off the road and new vehicles put on the road that are more fuel efficient and give off less emissions. and that's a good thing but when you look at the total number of vehicles on the road, 260 million vehicles in the u.s. fleet, it's going to be a challenge to get that turned over very quickly. having said that, if you don't start now, when are you going to start? and i think it's heading the country in the right direction.
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>> woodruff: bruce belzowski what about from an environmental -átandpoint? i saw from numbers today that made it sound like, as you just suggested, a drop in the bucket. with all the carbon emissions that are created in this country in a year, that this really is just a minor blip. >> judy, i think when i look at what's going on with this program from an administration perspective, i really see it as being part of a larger strategy from the energy department in terms of the obama energy plan. and where they're going to go with this now and in the future. we're trying to wean the u.s. off of fossil fuels and get better emissions from our vehicles and this is a kind of a step in that direction. one could even look at this as the first step by the administration to put their toe in the water to see how this is going to... how the people are going to react, how is it going to work in the marketplace. and there are other levers that they can pull and other programs that they might want to institute in the future that may
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work even better than this or follow on this. >> reporter: ed tonkin, you mentioned this has been a boon not only for dealers, it's been a boon for automakers. how much of a boon? we saw in the report that we just heard that, what, only% of these cars are made... that are selling the best are made here in the united states. so what's the picture a you're getting of which cars are selling better, domestic versus foreign. >> well, judy, let me correct that. 45% of the vehicles sold with this program are american company produced. many of the asian made vehicles, you can't call them imports anymore because they're actually produced here in america. for example, the toyota camry is one of the top-selling vehicles under this program and it's produced here in the united states. so you're talking about keeping factories open. but also when you consider, judy
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that about one out of every six jobs in this country is somehow tangentially related to producing an automobile, you're helping suppliers as well. now because these companies that went to these companies, namely general motors and chrysler-- ford did not-- they cut production for a while so so dealer inventories were cutting out to begin with. now because of this program dealers are finding themselves almost running out of inventories. so you're going to see about 600,000 vehicles built as a result of this program at the end of this year, i think. >> woodruff: bruce belzowski, how do you see the affect on the broader economy? or is there one? >> i'm looking at this from a broader perspective. it's really kind of a nice connecting piece to what's going on in the stock market. so you look at what's going on in the industry, what's going on
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in the stock market and you say maybe we can actually build on this and use this as a psychological push for the economy as we continue on and this is one piece of the puzzle. >> woodruff: i want to come back to you ed tonkin because i saw one report today in the associated press that one of the results of this is-- and to quote the report-- "dramatically higher prices for some of these new cars because the demand is high now there's a shortage. so my question is, is there really that much of a savings here for the consumer? >> well, i think there is. we have not experienced higher prices in our organization and i'm not sure that that's accurate information. but when you combine the cars rebate, which is $3,500 to $4,500, and many of the manufacturer incentives that have been added on in addition to that, you're probably going
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to get a better car buying price transaction than you would otherwise. because the manufacturers are seeing such a tremendous opportunity to sort of piggyback so you may not have those high incentives otherwise. i want to also agree with the gentleman who's on with me today about the psychological affect. i think it's terrific. i think acts as a catalyst, it's good news, it's positive, it gets people thinking about buying again. we're seeing successes with it. it's going to preserve and create jobs and i think good news is what we need. people's perception becomes their reality and this is something that's working and the government can feel very good about this, judy. >> woodruff: back to you bruce belzowski, if the reaction is this good, can the manufacturers can the dealers, keep up with the demand now that the senate
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is... now that you're going to have this additional $2 billion available? what's going to happen? >> i think that's a good question, judy. i myself have a clunker that i'm trying to trade in and the last couple of days i was looking to try to trade it in and really couldn't find enough stock in the detroit area because some so many of the dealers had been washed out of a lot of their products. but i'm hoping with the influx of the new money and also the factory continuing to build new products, when you look at the industry, this is kind of a crossover time where they're beginning to build '10s and quitting building '09s. and whether those are both going to fill the gap and be available in august as opposed to september/october time frame, that's what i'm a little nervous about. but hopefully the industry will sort this out for me.
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>> woodruff: ed tonkin, very quick last question. how do you see this ending? smoothly with everybody happy when the $2 billion is out there? >> well, first of all i see it with me selling bruce a car, i never want to miss a sale, so bruce, come out to portland. i think everybody will be happy. this is successful, you're going to jump start the economy. anything that can jump start our economy is good, it gives people hope and vision and we're starting to hear positive things in the media. i think it will keep plants going and, most importantly, it's going to keep jobs. this year alone, 400 general motors dealers closed just because of market conditions between january and march before the bankruptcy and those are lost jobs. so anything that can keep dealerships open, keep plants going, there's a win for our country. >> woodruff: ed tonkin, bruce belzowski, i'm glad at least we put the two of you together when it comes to a car. thank you very much. >> so am i, thank you, judy. thank you, bruce. >> thanks, judy.
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>> woodruff: finally tonight, a new weapon in the fight against ivory smuggling. our story comes from julian rush, science correspondent for independent television news. >> reporter: selling ivory isn't illegal as long as it comes from an elephant that died before 1947. until now, that's been difficult to prove so the market for ivo has continued to drive poaching. >> all the elephant i.v. they is taken has at one stage been on the front of a live elephant. somebody's killed the elephant to obtain the ivory and very often killed the game wardens to obtain the elephant in the first place. people are prepared to do this. it's organized crime. >> reporter: dating ivory needed an expert eye and forgers have got very good at carving new ivory and faking it to look antique. now from a tiny sample,
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scientists can tell old from new and all because of something that happened in the 1950s. one radioactive element in the fallout from the nuclear bomb tests of the era was carbon-14. every mushroom cloud, it seems, had a silver lining. the sample is carefully prepared for analysis. until the nuclear era, carbon-14 in the atmosphere was at a constant level. but the nuclear bomb tests suddenly added extra carbon-14 to the atmosphere and because it's taken up into the bones and tissue of every plant and animal on earth, the scientists can detect it. >> if we find the level of carbon 14 is enriched, then we know that that animal, the elephant, was alive during the nuclear era and therefore the ivory that we've analyzed is illegal ivory.
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>> reporter: a state of the art particle accelerator is used to count the carbon-14 atoms in the sample. the use of such a high-tech machine as this against wildlife crime is the result of a new collaboration between forensic scientists, conservationists and police and customs. this speck tomer the is normally used to date bones for archaeologists or rocks for geologists. it's the first time this dating technique has been used in a case of wildlife crime. it brings a new weapon to the fight against an illegal trade in animal parts and products that some have estimated is worth more than a billion pounds a year. >> we now are able to fully enforce the wildlife trade legislation, before we weren't able to do that. so it opens the door for police to use funds and to actually go after people who are trading in ivory. >> reporter: the dating technique was used in court for the first time last week. though the woman accused of illegally trading ivory was acquitted, her defense did not
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challenge the science. >> we still believe forensic tests such as the ones used in this case are very strong and should be used where possible in order to help the enforcement authorities to actually stop these traders. so it won't stop us from support forensic test development nor in their use by enforcement authorities. it's a key stone make sure that in the future there are successful prosecutions. >> reporter: this ivory was recovered from poachers in kenya in april. because of the trade in fake antique ivory the number of elephants killed is rising again. conservationists hope now they can date ivory scientifically and accurately, the forgers will think again and the elephants will live. >> woodruff: again, the major developments of the day. the u.s. senate confirmed federal judge sonia sotomayor to the u.s. supreme court.
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four u.s. marines died in a roadside bombing in western afghanistan. and secretary of state clinton promised expanded u.s. support for the government of somalia against an islamic extremist group. >> woodruff: on newshour.pbs.org two online-only features tonight about health care. read our patchwork nation blog to discover how small towns wealthy suburbs and booming communities view the reform proposals. and listen to experts answer your questions about taxing high-end health insurance plans. >> woodruff: and again to our honor roll of american service personnel killed in the iraq and afghanistan conflicts. we add them as their deaths are made official and photographs become available. here, in silence, are eight more.
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>> woodruff: we'll see you on-line and again here tomorrow evening with mark shields and david brooks, among others. i'm judy woodruff. thank you and good night. major funding for the newshour with jim lehrer is provided by:
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intel. supporting math and science education for tomorrow's innovators. chevron. and by the alfred p. sloan foundation. supporting science, technology, and improved economic performance and financial literacy in the 21st century. and with the ongoing support of these institutions and foundations. and... this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. captioning sponsored by macneil/lehrer productions captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
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